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Lessons learned and an appreciation for keeping it simple

Posted on August 10 2016

This past Sunday, I figured I would take an opportunity get in an hour or two working on the project truck. A couple simple tasks really. Change out the back glass on the truck and work on the electrical. Seemed simple enough in theory.

It all started well. As many of you know, the back glass on 1st series chev/gmc trucks is held in place with a gasket and a locking bead. Not high tech but works well. Removal is and was easy. Pull the lock strip, a couple screwdrivers and some gentle coaxing and the 65 year old glass slips right out. Man, that was easy. So the reverse should go just as well. Right?!!

Now, in theory, it should not matter if the lock bead is on the inside or outside. Looks cleaner on the inside, so lets go that way. Well, not so easy. After 2 and a half hours, every tool combination i could think of, the standard string in the groove to pull the seal over the glass trick,  and copious amounts of dish soap for lube, no go. Well, lets throw every curse word known to man into the mix, that will help.

Nope. This only made it worse and the soap made it slipperier that wrestling a thrashing 5lb salmon with bare hands. With successfully launching the glass out the truck window opening several times and not breaking it, I finally decided to get simple. Plus, i had used up all my curse words so I had no choice. 

Ditch the stupid string method, wipe off the greased pig snot (soap) and start over from the outside of the cab. In a moment of shear brilliance, and I think I even heard tinkerbell ring her bell, all tool were gently thrown across the garage, with the exception of my handy dandy house paint can openers. Just the right bend in the end to sneak under the glass, rounded edges and a sturdy handle - perfect. 

Slip the bottom glass edge in the seal channel, a light pry with the can openers and away we go. Literally in 5 minutes, by sliding the can openers around the edge of the glass and working the lip of the seal over the glass all the way around, and this glass was in! No more launching of the glass, no more colorful expletives that would make a trucker blush, and best of all, I discovered a new use for a tool to share with everyone.  The last step -  the locking bead which can be a real bear, add   some more soap lube and the can opener as a pressing tool and 5 minutes and done. Looks amazing! 

classic gmc back glass install

So lesson of the day kids, keep it simple. Simple tools, custom is cool but be prepared to commit or do it the way it is supposed to be done - probably a reason for that in the first place,  and always have a good set of curse words to break out and use on creative combinations as needed. 

Happy hot rodding. 

 

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1 comment

  • dave dowling: September 01, 2016

    lets see the rest of that baby, nice back window but I wanna see her grill.

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